In today's Customer Spotlight we are excited to introduce you to Dana Mwangi & Phillip Ashley. This will be a fun and unique customer spotlight as Phillip is Dana's client who requested X by name for his website. We wanted to spend some time introducing you to them and talking about the symbiotic relationship between our three companies and how you can use X as the goto theme for your client projects like Dana does! After all, if clients are requesting X by name, let us give the people what they want. 🙂
Q: Hi Dana! Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
A: I build brand identities for businesses, creative professionals and industry experts. I started out several years ago as an in-house print designer. I've designed everything from checks for financial institutions to package design. I started freelancing on the side to keep my creativity flowing, and became interested in web design as a way to expand my services beyond logo and print design, protect/manage the brand identities I was creating for my clients and take care of their needs from A-Z. Wordpress became my tool of choice.
Q: Can you walk us through the administrative side of the process once you receive an email from a potential client expressing interest in your services? How do you go from lead to sale?
A: Once I receive an inquiry from a prospect, I try to get to know them as much as I can. I ask a LOT of questions…everything from “Where do you see your company in 5 years” to “What does your ideal client play on his/her iPod?” Some of my questions may seem a little silly, but all of these questions help me to be in sync with what the client wants. Once I have all of the answers I need, I send price quotes and agreements. I lead with questions first, and pricing last, because I want to show prospects that I have their best interest at heart, and I'm sincerely interested in creating the best solution possible. I take pride in providing thoughtful design.
Q: You've built some amazing sites with X and another one for Phillip! How do you ultimately come up with color schemes, layout, image placement and the overall structure of a design?
A: Thank you! The client's answers to those silly questions I ask end up being my roadmap to creating a website layout, color scheme, etc. For example, I have a client that offers marketing services. After talking with the client further, I learned that her company has been around for almost 20 years. This was a major difference that she wanted to feature. So I used classic serifed typography with a fresh/modern color palette for a nice marriage of traditional and modern as a way to represent the company's heritage and innovative offerings.
Q: We are thrilled to know that X has become a goto product for you and your clients. Can you tell us more about that decision and how X has helped with regards to your business?
A: The first time I used X was when I used it to redesign my website (cheerscreative.com) with X. I absolutely loved it. Outside of the outstanding customer service Themeco provides (it truly is second to none!), I like that while I can create an innumerable amount of layouts, but the backend/page builder is easy enough for clients to understand and maintain.
Q: How did you and Phillip meet?
A: I found out about Phillip Ashley Chocolates and his award-winning culinary creations via social media. I decided to visit his shop, introduce myself and try samples. A few months later, Phillip asked me to design a website for him, specifically with the X theme.
Q: What characteristics define a successful relationship between a client (such as Phillip) and the designer (such as yourself)?
A: The most important characteristic is trust. My primary job is to making sure my clients trust me. Every blog post I create, every newsletter, everything I share on social media and the content on my website is there to build up prospects' trust in my expertise and abilities. And once a prospect becomes my client, I continue to build that trust by explaining every step of my design process and including them in it.
We will now transition to Dana's client Phillip and introduce you to him, his tips for aspiring entrepreneurs, and why he requested X specifically for his new website.
Q: Hi Phillip! Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
Q: We heard that you requested X by name! How did you come to hear about us, and what are some of the things you like about X?
A: Yes, I did ask for X by name. Dana announced her new venture with Themeco and how amazing X is and all it offers. So I checked it out and immediately knew that's what I wanted for my next website. I contacted her immediately and within a few short weeks the site was up and running—I don't waste time. I love how it's elegance is rooted in simplicity. I'm a believer in “less is more.” So it appealed to me from a design perspective right away.
Q: As a business owner, what are the most important things you want to see accomplished with your shiny new website?
A: My brand is all about exceptional presentation. My new site needed to be visually striking and be easy to navigate but offer a dynamic presentation while doing so. Pages and content have to flow seamlessly and build upon one another in a way that tells the story I want to narrate.
Q: Business and chocolate…two incredibly fun specialties (much less together)! What is the largest single order of chocolate you've ever sold?
A: Top 3 largest single orders were 2500 gift boxes for The Westin Hotel Beale Street, 1000 gift boxes for Regional One Health, and 500 gift boxes and chocolate tasting bar for 500 guests for the Conners' wedding.
Q: Do you think passion is essential in entrepreneurial pursuits in the modern era? And if so, what are you most passionate about as it relates to your business?
A: I believe passion paired with vision and the guts to go out and make it happen is essential as an entrepreneur no matter the era. That's the thing about true entrepreneurial spirit, it's timeless. I love chocolate, but what I love even more is that it has provided me the platform to connect with people and offers me the most creative of ways to tell and share my stories—each chocolate tells a story.
Q: I loved your explanation of taking an idea from “Concept to Cash Flow,” as that is the million dollar question in any business. What are your favorite ways to build not only awareness for your business but actual sales?
A: We build awareness for the purpose of generating sales. The two are inextricably linked. Social media has become integral in how we reach potential consumers and brand advocates. What we do is very visual so posting vivid images of our designer chocolates along with captions that put out a “call to action” gets people through the doors and visiting the website. Having a visually striking website provides the “oohs” and “ahhs” and communicates that our brand is first class. I host chocolate tasting events that not only showcase what we do but is also another way we generate sales.
Thank-you Dana and Phillip for contributing to this incredibly insightful Customer Spotlight Series around the relationship between a theme provider (Themeco), the designer (Dana, Cheers Creative), and the client (Phillip, Phillip Ashley Chocolates). We encourage you to check out Dana's site over at cheerscreative.com and Phillip's site over at phillipashleypresents.com—both using X and wonderful examples! If you are a customer of ours who is interested in being featured in a future Spotlight, we'd love to hear from you.